Petroleum's Uses

This lesson covers petroleum's many uses.  Anybody who lives in a modern country uses petroleum every day.  Petroleum is used in manufacturing and transit of nearly... everything.  From the fertilizers that grow our food to the fuel that runs ours cars we use Petroleum in many different ways.

From Well to Customer

Petroleum starts as crude oil that is pumped out of the ground along with natural gas and transported to the consumer.  Pumping and transporting crude oil is an activity that is both beneficial for local economies and dangerous for the environment.  The Petroleum extraction and transport systems in the United States are large and complex.  A large number of people in the US work in the Petroleum industry.

How Cheap Petroleum Shaped Modern America

Gas and plastic products are very cheap in the United States compared to the rest of the United States.  In the US cars are cheap and how our towns are built and how we interact with each other was largely formed by how us having access to cheap gas and petroleum products.

The Negatives of Petroleum

In addition to Climate Change the widespread use of Petroleum has many negative effects on the environment and human health.  Rich people tend to get the benefits of the petroleum industry while poor people end up dealing with the the negatives.

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